Cloud Party Becomes First Virtual World to Officially Support the Oculus Rift; Ex-Linden Cyn Skyberg: "We Are Getting Very Close to the Original Concept of VR"
Cloud Party, the web-based virtual world, now officially supports the Oculus Rift via a plug-in -- read about it here on the company blog, and if you have a dev kit, follow the instructions for connecting Cloud Party to your Rift headset.
As such, Cloud Party becomes the first virtual world to officially support the Oculus Rift. Second Life developer Linden Lab was expected to unveil its support for the Rift last Summer, but so far, only this unofficial third party viewer for SL is currently available. However, Cloud Party is backed and advised by SL co-creator Cory Ondrejka, and ex-Linden Lab VP Cyn Skyberg now heads up Cloud Party's community management.
Speaking of which, here's what Cyn Skyberg says about the experience of using Cloud Party through the Rift (that's her pictured above):
"My personal description is 'Crap! That is way more impressive than I ever thought it would be!' The level of detail is amazing." Some users may experience a feeling of seasickness at times -- a sensation common to every platform running the Rift -- but even then, she goes on, "It is very, very compelling."
For her, Rift integration with Cloud Party gets us closer to virtual reality as we originally conceived it -- and platforms like Second Life were originally built for:
"If we could combine it with something like LeapMotion (also possible) we are getting very close to the original concept of what we thought virtual reality would be like," as Cyn puts it. "When I started working in virtual worlds, THIS is what I wanted -- to jump into it, to just... be there. And to be able to see a huge variety of different things, from Yosemite Valley to Hoverbike Racing. And this addition to Cloud Party does that. I freaking love technology."
Cloud Party developers, by the way, recently added a number of updates to the world's graphics, such as procedural skies, which are likely to make the OR experience in CP that much more immersive. It will be interesting to compare it to Second Life and the Rift, when that comes available. In any case, this week's news suggests virtual world virtual reality development is no longer driven by just one company.
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